Association with Unity

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Granular LinuxAs was hinted in a post at Team Granular blog, Granular will now be a part of the Unity Project. Unity is in it’s beginning stages, but development is already on full swing. The enthusiasm of developers and members can be seen clearly on Unity’s devel mailing list and its public forum. At this point of time, I’ll refrain myself from giving full details about the association of Granular with Unity, but detailed announcements will come out at a later stage. What all I can tell you right now is I am pretty happy with the progress that’s been going on at Unity and Granular.

One more thing. You see only the Granular logo at the left and no logo of Unity as it’s still being finalized. But I am sure the creative artwork guys there will come up with something interesting pretty soon.

Apologies accepted

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Tom (aka Kurakroma and cbar2 on Granular Community Forum) was a very active member of the forum and one of the global mods there too. He used to be the live wire of the forum, and had a very keen mind which he utilized in discovering new things and putting forward questions, and sometimes trying to help people facing problems using Granular (or Linux in general). But under some circumstances not known to the Team Granular members, he left the forums quietly; not leaving even a single message of this sudden action of his.

Just recently, some one at the Granular forum put forward a question asking whether we owned the .co.uk domain of Granular Linux, perhaps the British community of Granular (no, we don’t own any such domain)? On checking which link he was referring to, we were quite surprised to find out there indeed existed a .co.uk domain of Granular.

Check it out for yourself. Rest is self-explanatory. Boy, what a way of expressing his regret. Let me assure you Tom, all your apologies are accepted. And all our doors are still open for you. 🙂

Granular Package Archive

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rpm_logoContinuing my Java learning stint, I started experimenting on RPM packages in the Granular 2008 repository by extracting meta data from them using various Java classes I had written for my on-going college major project. To give a shape (end-user interface) to these leisurely done Java programs, I used my existing project MyBlog to create a website that could display information (extracted by the Java programs) about every RPM package in the repository. In other words, the Java programs store information about each RPM package in a central database which in turn is used by a PHP-based website to display that information, and much more.

In the introduction to Granular Package Archive post I wrote on the Team Granular blog, I explained the various features it has to offer. My personal favorite is the ability to leave comments on individual RPM pages. Other than that, I am quite satisfied with the overall look-and-feel too. In another of my Team Granular blog post, I explained the working of this package archive system, and the way to use it with any other repository of RPM packages.

Some guys at the Unity Project are also contemplating the idea of using this package archive system with their repository too.

Ramblings

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Tuz. Is he cute?

In a bid to help save Tasmanian Devils from extinction, Linus Torvalds decided to release the latest Linux kernel with the “Tuz” logo as the console image at the LCA 2009 conference. Tuz is a name perhaps derived from the popular Linux mascot Tux, plus Tasmanian Devil (Taz – as it was known as a Looney Toones cartoon character). So Tuz replaces Tux as the console boot image for the kernel release 2.6.29.

So 2.6.29 isn’t quite out yet, but I’ve merged the new Tuz logo, so now my laptop boots up with two of these guys showing. See an earlier post about the plush version of this that I got while in Hobart for LCA 2009.
Linus Torvalds

Hindi in GMail

In another news, GMail gets support for writing emails in Indian languages. The Google Transliteration technology had been around for some time now (through Google Labs), and this support for Indian languages in GMail was built using Transliteration.

We currently support five Indian languages — Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam — and you can select the language of your choice from the drop-down list next to the icon.
Google Blog

Tata Nano – The beginning of a new era

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ratan-tata-presenting-tata-nano
Ratan Tata striking a pose with Nano (Image courtesy: bradstinyworld.com)

It’s finally out. The world’s cheapest car is up for the taking now, thanks to the hard working guys at Tata Motors who made the launch possible without much delay (which was being expected due to the shift in manufacturing plant location). Touted as the “one lakh-worth car”, it’s price start from Rs. 1.3 Lakh and goes upto Rs. 1.8 Lakh. Well, that’s a decent price for an entry level car, taking in consideration the various features it has to offer.

This cute little car can speed upto 105 km/hour; pretty decent speed within a city and some highways. It also promises to offer a modest economy of 23 km/litre of petrol. As the engine has been shifted to the back of the car, it makes for huge leg space for the front seats; comfortable driving, you say?

It will be made available in 3 models – Basic, CX and LX – mentioned in increasing order of prices. Don’t expect air-conditioning system in the basic model, and the center-locking system is available only in the LX model. Being a really small and light-weight car, power steering has not been made available in any of the three models. Wikipedia is probably the best source to explore all its features and specifications further.

An interesting thing related to the launch of this small car is that initially it will be made available to only 1 lakh customers until the manufacturing capacity is increased further or more factories are setup. Obviously, the initial bookings are set to exceed this1 lakh mark, so the Tata people came up with a plan. Each potential customer will have to book the car by sending a form to Tata Motors. Out of all the applications received, a draw will be held to select the lucky 1 lakh guys! Whoa! And the forms come at a price – Rs. 300 each. Another money making scheme by the Indian giant conglomerate?

One this is sure – the car is poised to begin a new era of small & cheap cars, and will spark a new revolution in a country where not even every middle-class family can afford a car.